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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 106, No. 6, 2011, pp. 759-762
Bioline Code: oc11128
Full paper language: English
Document type: Short Communication
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 106, No. 6, 2011, pp. 759-762

 en Can thymic epithelial cells be infected by human T-lymphotropic virus type 1?
Moreira-Ramos, Klaysa; Castro, Flávia; Linhares-Lacerda, Leandra & Savino, Wilson


The human T-lymphotropic virus type-1 (HTLV-1) is the cause of adult T cell leukaemias/lymphoma. Because thymic epithelial cells (TEC) express recently defined receptors for the virus, it seemed conceivable that these cells might be a target for HTLV-1 infection. We developed an in vitro co-culture system comprising HTLV-1+-infected T cells and human TECs. Infected T cells did adhere to TECs and, after 24 h, the viral proteins gp46 and p19 were observed in TECs. After incubating TECs with culture supernatants from HTLV-1+-infected T cells, we detected gp46 on TEC membranes and the HTLV-1 tax gene integrated in the TEC genome. In conclusion, the human thymic epithelium can be infected in vitro by HTLV-1, not only via cell-cell contact, but also via exposure to virus-containing medium.

thymic epithelial cells, HTLV-1 infection, adult T cell leukaemia/lymphoma, cell adhesion

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